September 11, 2001 : Attack on America
United States Postal Service Fact Sheet; October 23, 2001

United States Postal Service Fact Sheet

Tuesday, October 23, 2001
11 p.m.


Two deceased USPS workers in Washington area

Inhaled anthrax is CONFIRMED cause of death in BOTH employees.

Name of first worker to die is Joseph P. Curseen Jr., 47, of Clinton, MD, a mail processor with 15 years of USPS service.

Name of second worker to die is Thomas L. Morris Jr., 55, of Suitland, MD, a distribution clerk with 28 years of USPS service.

They worked in Brentwood facility.

Two additional USPS workers in Washington area hospitalized for inhalation anthrax

Inhaled anthrax is CONFIRMED in both employees.

Names of two hospitalized employees have not been released.

They both worked in the Brentwood facility.

Status of employee anthrax testing of Washington, D.C. Processing and Distribution Center on Brentwood Road

Testing began Sunday, Oct. 21 at Judiciary Square and continued Monday at DC General Hospital.

As of 4 p.m. Tuesday, 3,839 employees and others who have visited the center had been tested.

Results are expected within 3-5 days of date of testing.

Random environmental testing is under way of backrooms, workrooms and non-public areas of 36 area post offices that send and receive mail from the Brentwood facility. Employees, vendors or visitors to these areas should obtain a 10-day supply of precautionary prophylactic antibiotics at DC General Hospital.

Employees who did not report to work as scheduled are being contacted to ensure they are in good health.

Status of environmental anthrax testing at D.C. Brentwood postal facility

This facility was closed Oct. 21.

The USPS on its own independently hired URS Corp. of Gaithersburg, MD, a private health contracting company, to perform environmental testing of the facility on Oct. 18 as a precautionary measure.

The government mail area and some processing equipment were tested.

Early preliminary results indicated no contamination. However, results returned Monday, Oct. 22 from URS showed that 14 of 29 tested sites in the workroom area tested positive for presence of anthrax.

The USPS has hired a private contractor to decontaminate the facility. The facility will remain closed until the CDC certifies it is safe.


Status of anthrax testing of USPS workers at Baltimore Air Mail Facility adjacent to BWI Airport

The expedited mail unit (Building C) of the air cargo complex on Route 170 was closed Sunday, Oct. 21 as a precaution.

As of 4 p.m. Tuesday, 206 employees, drivers and others who have recently been in the building have been tested. Local management leased buses and vans to transport employees to Judiciary Square and DC General.

Test results are expected within 3-5 days from date of testing.

Status of environmental anthrax testing at Baltimore Air Mail Facility adjacent to BWI Airport

Building C is closed and operations have been transferred to Building E.

Environmental testing of the facilities will be conducted by CDC.


USPS workers in Trenton, N.J. area hospitalized or treated for anthrax

801 employees have been tested as of 9 p.m. Monday. Employees have been placed on prophylactic antibiotics pending test results.

One letter carrier from the West Trenton Post Office has been diagnosed with skin anthrax.

One employee at the Trenton Processing and Distribution Center has been diagnosed with skin anthrax. Another employee is suspected of having skin anthrax.

One employee at the Trenton Processing and Distribution Center is hospitalized and is suspected of having contracted inhalation anthrax.

USPS workers in NYC area are being treated for anthrax

Some employees at the Morgan mail processing and distribution center, Times Square station and Rockefeller Center station are being tested.

80-100 employees are being tested initially, including 50 at the Morgan facility. NONE are showing symptoms. Testing is being done to address employee concerns.

Status of environmental anthrax testing at Trenton postal facilities

After employees at the West Trenton Post Office and the Trenton Processing and Distribution Center tested positive for anthrax, those facilities were closed.

Environmental anthrax testing has been conducted at both facilities.

Environmental testing has found no evidence of contamination at the West Trenton Post Office.

Environmental has detected the presence of anthrax spores at the Trenton Processing and Distribution Center.

Status of environmental anthrax testing at NYC mail facilities

NO indications exist that any facility in NYC is contaminated. Testing is being done to address employee concerns.

Testing began Tuesday, Oct. 23 at: Morgan mail processing facility, James A. Farley Building, Grand Central Station, Times Square Station, Rockefeller Center Station, Radio City Station and Ansonia Station.

These are sites where the letters to NBC, ABC and New York Post were processed.

7,000 employees of New York postal district have been put on Cipro purely as a precautionary measure.


USPS to use new technology to "sanitize" mail

The USPS is purchasing new irradiation equipment to kill any biological agents in mail separated by targeted screening.

The Postal Service will be using the latest, state-of-the-art technology in targeted areas but for security reasons is not discussing that equipment in detail.

The Board of Governors on Oct. 22 unanimously authorized by emergency vote the expenditure of at least $200 million to purchase or lease the equipment.

This technology already has been put to successful use in the food and medical services industries.

USPS is implementing several preventive measures to protect employees

Asking employees to update all personal information (right phone #'s etc).

Employees going to visit a hospital or physician should notify the physician immediately that they are a postal employee.

24-hour informational line available for employees to call to keep USPS informed of status. That # is 866-545-8777.

Working with the CDC, we have identified an appropriate mask and are procuring them now. The Post Office is highly recommending both gloves and thorough hand washing for employees who process mail.

The USPS has ordered gloves made of Nitrile, a high-grade industrial plastic. Enough gloves have been ordered to supply 3 pairs per employee per day for 90 days in those facilities that are contaminated.

The USPS has ordered a 90-day supply of filtering face masks for employees who work in mail processing areas. These masks are able to filter out 95 percent of all microbes in the air, including anthrax spores.

We have switched the methods we use to clean mail processing equipment from a forced-air system to a vacuuming system.

We have switched to antibacterial cleaning solutions.

We are sending a postcard to all employees explaining how to safely handle mail.

Effect on mail delivery

Mail is being delivered and is NOT limited or restricted in any areas.

USPS is implementing other preventive security measures to protect the public

145 million postcards are being sent to all households throughout the country explaining how to safely handle suspicious mail.

The USPS produced a video addressing mailroom security and has distributed it to 15,000 business customers.

We are offering a reward of up to $1 million for information leading to the arrest and conviction of anyone having mailed a letter containing anthrax.

U.S. Government Website

September 11 Page

127 Wall Street, New Haven, CT 06511.